Original German WWII Silver Grade Infantry Assault Badge by Walter & Henlein with Award Document
Original Items: Only One Available. This is a very nice example of a German WWII Infantry Assault Badge, complete with its original named and dated Besitzzeugnis "possession/award" certificate!
The award document indicates that it was awarded to Unteroffizier Ernst Haubrich of Stabskp. / M.G. Btl. (mot) 13 (Staff Company of Machine Gun Battalion (motorized) 13) of the Ski Brigade in Finland. This is an NCO rank equivalent to a U.S. Sergeant. It was awarded on 9.11.1944, and has the signature of Oberst Hans Sheets, commander of the M.G. Ski-Brigade Finnland. This officer spent his entire career as a Gebirgsjäger (Mountain Trooper), and had been awarded the German Cross in 1942. He was later promoted to Generalmajor (Brigadier General) on April 20th 1945. Sheets survived the war, but not much can be found about his life afterwards.
The document has all the correct stamps and markings, and is the standard, 8 1/4" x 5 3/4", printed on mid-weight paper with black print and typed in particulars. It is in good condition, with some edge folding and tears, and also was folded in half at one time, and has binder holes punched on the left side.
Called in German the Infanterie-Sturmabzeichen in Silber, this genuine badge is constructed of silvered die-struck zinc. Over time, the silvering can wear and flake off, showing the oxidized base metal, which is grayish. The front of this badge still retains a good amount of the silvering, mostly on the upper right side of both the front and back. The lower left is missing almost all of the plating.
The design of the badge consists of an oval oak wreath tied together at the base via a ribbon, with a national eagle clutching a mobile swas (hook cross), with a vertically oriented Karabiner 98k with the bayonet attached to the front of the barrel and the carrying sling hanging from the rifle superimposed on the wreath. The back of the badge is marked W.H. for maker Walter Henlein of Gablonz, part of the so-called "Sudetenland" during WWII. Today it is known as Jablonec nad Nisou in the Czech Rebublic.
The back also features a vertical pinback, with pressed in barrel hinge and catch. It measures approximately 48 mm (w) x 63 mm (h) with a weight of 35 grams. This example is overall in very good condition, with a lovely patina.
Overall a very nice example of this type of badge, complete with its original award certificate. Ready to display!
The Infantry Assault Badge (Infanterie-Sturmabzeichen) was a German war badge awarded to Waffen-SS and Wehrmacht Heer soldiers during the Second World War. This decoration was instituted on 20 December 1939 by the Commander-in-Chief of the German Army, Generalfeldmarschall Walther von Brauchitsch. It could be awarded to members of non-motorized Infantry units and units of the Gebirgsjäger that had participated in infantry assaults, with light infantry weapons, on at least three separate days of battle in the front line on or after 1 January 1940. When a counter offensive led to fighting, it could also apply. Award of the Infantry Assault Badge was authorized at regimental command level.
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